If your religion, like mine, is cinema, Metrograph, opening today, is a glorious new place of worship. Six years in gestation, Metrograph took just seven months to build. Founder (filmmaker, fashion designer) Alexander Olch, says, “We wanted to create something that’s more than a movie theater.” In addition to two screening rooms (50 seats and 175 seats, with 23 in a perfect balcony), which will show first-run and repertory films, Metrograph also has a restaurant (evocatively named the Commissary), a café-lounge and a cinema-dedicated bookstore with rare volumes and contemporary film journals. (Why ever leave the building?)
Explaining that the Metrograph staff wants to invite moviegoers “to see movies the way we do,” Artistic and Programming Director Jacob Perlin says, “Jean Eustache in a Rocky t-shirt. This is the image we had in mind while making this first calendar. Great cinema is there, wherever you can find it. The dismissed film now recognized as a classic, the forgotten box-office hit newly resurrected, the high and the low, the refined and the rough. We want to revive the joy of going to the movies, in a newly designed venue that will be welcoming to all filmgoers for a breezy afternoon matinee, a Saturday night out at the movies, a day-long epic binge, or a late-night marathon—all are waiting for you through the doors of Metrograph.”
Metrograph, 7 Ludlow Street, 212-660-0312, is open every day, and with the upcoming launch of the Commissary, hours will be 9:00 am to 2:00 am.